How to Gently Detangle a Synthetic & Human Hair Wig

Written by: Nancy Pinder



Time to read 8 min

If your wig is looking a little dishevelled and tangled, it's time for some much-needed TLC – but detangling your wig correctly is super important to make sure you don’t cause snapping or shedding.

Wigs will naturally get a bit tangled if you wear them regularly, just as our natural hair does. But they’ll also get a little knotted if you haven’t used or brushed them in a while or you haven’t stored them properly (that’s what our Hanger & Bag Combo is for!).

So long as your wig isn’t a massive ball of knots, you’ll be able to detangle it easily and restore it to its smooth and silky state in no time.

To help you do just that, we’ve pulled together our steps on how to detangle a synthetic and human hair wig at home.

What’s the Easiest Way to Detangle a Wig?

We hate to say it, but the easiest way to detangle a wig is to not let it get tangled in the first place. Prevention is key!

The more you wear your wig, the more likely it is to get a few knots and snags – which is completely normal. Plus, if you’re styling it by tying it up, braiding it, or playing around with other wig styling techniques, it’s only natural that the hair fibres may get a bit tangled.

Brushing the hair at the end of each day will help prevent major tangles and make it easier to detangle later on.

The brush you use is important, as you want the bristles not to catch on the hair. Our Deluxe Hair Extensions Brush is fab for gently combing out any knots!

Just be sure to start at the bottom and gently work your way up rather than yanking away from the top. Splitting the hair into sections will also make the process easier.

How to Detangle a Synthetic Wig

If you’ve already let your synthetic wig get in a bit of a messy state and it’s past the simple brushing-out stage, don’t panic. There are still ways to detangle it without causing any damage.

First, you’ll want to gather all your hair care tools and supplies, including:

Step 1: Wash & Condition Your Wig

First things first, giving your wig a good wash and conditioning is key. Doing so softens the synthetic hair fibres, making it a breeze to brush through.

Soak your wig in lukewarm water and gently work in a bit of RiRi Hair Extensions Shampoo. Using your fingers, spread it evenly through the wig.

After a thorough rinse, slather on some RiRi Hair Extension Conditioner from root to tip. Remember, unlike your own hair, wigs need that all-over conditioning love since they don't get natural oils from your scalp.

Let the conditioner sit for a few minutes to really soften those fibres, then rinse out. This step is a game-changer, making your wig softer and detangling a whole lot easier, setting you up for a smooth brushing session.

Gently press out the water with a microfiber towel (don't rub the hair; it'll just tangle it more!) and let the fibres air dry completely before you start detangling.

Step 2: Section the Hair

After your wig has dried, let's get it ready for a gentle detangle. Pop it onto a wig stand or a mannequin head – trust us, it's a game-changer for easing out those knots.

Next, divide it into sections with clips or ties to set yourself up for a much smoother detangling session. Focusing on one small area at a time not only prevents damage to the fibres but also ensures every single knot is dealt with.

Step 3: Detangle the Wig Using Proper Tools

Now, grab your hair brush, and start at the very ends of your wig and gently brush out any tangles before moving up the wig in small sections.

Working from the bottom up allows you to detangle each knot and tangle with minimal stress on the fibres, preventing unnecessary shedding or damage. You can also use a wide toothcomb to deal with more serious knots.

Check out our TikTok video tutorial below on how to brush your synthetic hair. 

@ririhairextensions_uk Always start from the bottom going up using a hair extensions brush made for synthetic hair! Purchase a Riri hair brish in the link bellow💗 #fyp #foryou #viralvideo #hairextensions ♬ Kiss Is Better with You (Remix) - Isintah

How to Detangle a Human Hair Wig

The process for detangling a human hair wig is very similar to the one for synthetic wigs, but there are some extra products and steps you can take to keep your wig slaying.

Here are the products and tools we recommend to detangle your human wig:

  • Wig stand
  • RiRi Signature Deluxe Hair Brush
  • Hair Extension Shampoo & Conditioner Duo
  • RiRi Hair Extensions Boost
  • A wide-tooth comb (optional)
  • Microfibre hair towel
  • Clips and hair ties
  • Styling tools

Step 1: Wash & Deep Condition Your Wig

To prepare your human hair wig for detangling, let's start with a gentle soak in lukewarm water. Next, take a bit of RiRi Hair Extensions Shampoo and massage it gently through your wig.

After a thorough rinse, massage some RiRi Hair Extensions Conditioner from roots to ends. Give it a few minutes to work its magic for that deep conditioning your wig craves. Rinse out, and voilà! Your wig will feel utterly rejuvenated and silky smooth.

If your wig needs a bit of extra TLC, our Hair Extensions Boost provides a deep conditioning treatment that can restore the natural, healthy shine of real hair fibres.

Step 2: Create Manageable Sections

Sectioning your human hair wig is the first step towards an easier detangling process. Not only does it allow you to work through those knots methodically, but it also keeps your wig in tip-top shape.

Technique Description Best Use
Horizontal Dividing the wig into horizontal layers, starting from the nape and moving up. Long, densely packed wigs
Vertical Creating sections from front to back, like slices. Targeting specific areas for detangling (nape, underneath layers)
Quadrant Dividing wig into four quadrants (two front, two back). Versatile, works well for short and long wigs
Pie Dividing the wig like pie slices from crown to nape. Layered or shorter wigs

Step 3: Gently Detangle With a Wig Brush

Gently start detangling your human hair wig from the tips, working upwards in small sections with a good-quality hair brush.

Hold the section of hair firmly at the root to minimise pulling on the cap. Proceed slowly, ensuring each section is smooth before moving higher.

If you find the knots to be a little temperamental, you can use your fingers to gently separate them before brushing through. This will help avoid any unnecessary tugging and pulling on the hair.

Argan oil is also a good little trick to use when detangling your wig. The oil helps to provide a smooth and slippery surface, making it easier to comb through without causing any damage.

How to Prevent Tangles in Your Wig

Aside from regularly brushing your wig, making sure to properly store it can also help prevent tangles.

If you just throw your wig in a box under your bed or leave it splayed on your vanity, you’re asking for trouble. Instead, keep it neatly zipped up in a storage bag and hung up with a hanger.

Our Hair Extensions Hanger & Bag Combo is a fantastic choice. This combo is super handy, especially if you're after that extra layer of protection.

With the hanger, your wig stays secure and manageable, free from tangles. Plus, the bag keeps it away from dust and dirt, keeping your wig looking fresh and extending its life. 

Why Your Wig Tangles Easily

If you find yourself having to constantly de-mat your wig, there could be a few reasons why it's so prone to tangling…

  • The quality of the wig is low. Cheaper wigs are often made with lower-grade hair, which can easily tangle.

  • You're not storing it properly. As mentioned before, leaving your wig out in the open can cause tangles.

  • You're not using the right products. Using harsh chemicals or heat styling without proper protection can damage the hair and lead to tangling.

  • Repetitive or improper styling. Constantly brushing or pulling on the wig can cause snags and tangles.

  • You’re not letting the wig fully dry. After washing, make sure to let your wig air dry completely before styling, which will help avoid the dreaded matting in the back.

Final Thoughts: Detangle Your Wig With Some TLC

Really, it all comes down to how well you take care of the hair, regardless of whether it’s synthetic or human hair. Treat your wig as if it’s your own hair, and you’ll have less problems with tangling.

Create yourself a bit of a wig-care routine to follow, and you’ll be able to enjoy your wig for much longer. Remember to use gentle products, avoid harsh styling methods, and always let your wig dry completely before wearing or storing it.

And don’t forget to grab our haircare products and accessories to help keep your wig looking its best! From detangling brushes to specialised shampoo and conditioner, we have everything you need to keep your wig in top shape.

Shop our collection today! 


Does Fabric Softener Detangle Wigs?

We wouldn’t recommend using a fabric softener on your wig as it may damage the fibers and make them more prone to tangling. Stick to gentle, wig- or hair extension-specific products for best results.

How Do You Detangle a Cheap Costume Wig?

Detangling a cheap costume wig is similar to detangling a quality wig. We'd recommend being as gentle as possible when brushing to avoid pulling the strands out of the wig cap and ruining the wig.

Why is My Wig so Tangled?

Wigs, especially synthetic ones, can tangle due to friction from daily wear, lack of moisture, and not being stored properly. Regular maintenance, gentle detangling, and using the right products can significantly reduce tangles.

How Does the RiRi Brush Protect Wigs?

The RiRi Brush is designed with unique, soft bristles that gently glide through wigs and extensions, minimising damage and breakage. This reduces stress on the fibres, protecting your wig's integrity and ensuring it remains smooth and tangle-free for longer periods.

Why Do Wigs Tangle in the Back?

The most common reason for tangling in the back of a wig is due to friction against clothing, especially when wearing scarves or jackets with rough textures. Plus, not allowing the hair to dry completely before wearing can also contribute to tangling. 

Does Conditioner Detangle Wigs?

Yes, hair conditioners do detangle wigs, but it is important to use a lightweight and moisturising formula specifically designed for wigs. 

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